hooligans-dvd-location-film i.d.

Shadwell Town and I.D.: stadiums seen in the film

Film locations and stadiums depicted in the classic ID movie (and its sequel).

Football grounds sometimes serve as locations for many football movies although they don’t always represent what/where they really are. Let’s take a journey to discover stadiums and places in “I.D.” (1995) and “ID2: Shadwell Army” (2016).

“I.D.” has been one of the best movies about football culture during the 90s. The story surrounding Shadwell FC was very well described by Philip Davis, the director, but which ground was selected to represent “The Kennel” (Shadwell’s home ground)? Where did the fans stand during the fictional matches in the film?

Obviously, many things have changed since 1995.

“I.D.” was filmed in 1994 when a lot of grounds around Britain were being completely renovated. Some stands we see in the film are very different nowadays, with no more crush barriers (although standing areas are coming back), more cameras and adverts etc, but still somehow we can feel the same atmosphere the film tried to communicate.

From Shadwell to… Brisbane Road

Shadwell FC don’t exist, and that’s a fact. We all know that but the “places” they’re referred to are real.

(visual by Archistadia)

Shadwell Overground and DLR station, in London – one of the oldest in town, by the way, opened in 1876 – represents the area from where the fictional Football Club should come from.

Also, Wapping station – next one southbound after Shadwell – is the direct “link” to Wapping FC, depicted as fierce rivals of the Dogs and highlighted in the film when the derby match comes up in the FA Cup draw.

The first real impact with a football ground during “I.D.” comes after 15 minutes or so, when the four undercover agents go to their first proper home game. The Kennel is Shadwell’s home ground and Brisbane Road, home of Leyton Orient, served for the external views of the stadium back then.

Looking at the movie scene when John, Trevor and the others walk towards The Kennel (see pic above) we can understand that’s actually the REAL path to reach Brisbane Road. The lads are coming down from the north area, along Thornhill Gardens, then they go through a small alley to pop up on Windsor Road. They then keep on walking westwards and finally turn left on Brisbane Rd, the street along the old stand of Leyton Orient’s home ground (clearly seen in that scene).

Brisbane Road has changed a lot since 1994, with a new main stand on the west side and blocks of flats built at the four corners of the ground. The east stand is still there, though, and almost unaltered – and you can tell it from this comparison, pictured below.

(visual by Archistadia)
Rotherham, Millmoor Ground

London wasn’t the only location for “I.D.”, anyway. Several scenes were shot in Rotherham, Yorkshire, at Millmoor Ground.

This stadium, home of Rotherham FC until 2008, served as location for the internal views of Shadwell’s home park – despite during the film we see several close-ups of the fans and we can’t appreciate any detail of the stadium. Millmoor Ground, though, wasn’t used as the Dogs home ground only but also as an away ground along the movie.

When Shadwell play away from home against Tyneburn FC, John and the other travelling fans reach the ground through an alley, leading them to the away section inside the stadium. That’s Millmoor Lane, actually a path to Millmoor Lane End, at the Rotherham’s ground (see pic below).

Also, the aways fans point of view that’s depicted in the film is actually the real one from Millmoor Lane End looking towards the Railway End (as I tried to highlight with a map and a photo comparison at the end of this article).

-> you can find Millmoor Lane on Google Maps, here: https://goo.gl/maps/reSQXc1U4BD2

(visual by Archistadia)
Bradford, Valley Parade

One of the pivotal scenes in “I.D.” certainly happens during the derby Wapping v Shadwell, as I’ve mentioned before. John, the main character, with a few other Dogs, attacks the opposite fans inside their own stand, then is almost arrested by the police and eventually runs away reaching the away section where Shadwell fans stand.

When the two policemen escort John along the pitch, that’s another ground we can identify: they walk along the Main Stand of Valley Parade, Bradford and the scene was actually filmed during a Bradford v Hull City game (Reece Dinsdale himself recalled it via twitter a few years ago, see below).

This stand was re-opened in 1986, after the tragic 1985 stadium fire, and what we see in “I.D.” is its first versionbefore a new expansion occurred at the end of the 90s.

id hooligans film bradford shadwell reece dinsdale
La scena girata a Valley Parade e la tribuna dell’epoca (visual by Archistadia)

The side wall structure is very well recognisable from the movie scenes (see pic above) and if we pay further attention to the frames we would see Admiral (Bradford City’s kit sponsor in 1994/95 season) and Pulse Radio (Bradford’s local radio) adverts alongside the pitch, when John is hold by the two bobbies.

Not to forget, the “direction” John is forced to walk in is actually “the right one”. In “I.D.” he’s brought alongside the West Stand towards the Bradford End (today TL Dallas Stand) to rejoin his fellow Dogs friends. This is a correct characterisation as the Bradford End is indeed the away section of the ground during Bradford City matches.

ID2 – Shadwell Army (the sequel)

A mention is due for the second chapter of “I.D.”, came out more than twenty years after the original film, in 2016.

We didn’t see football scenes in the first movie and, if possible, we see even less “stadium action” in this new episode. “ID2: Shadwell Army” (directed by Joel Novoa) is very much focused on a wider perspective of criminal trades of different sort than the first movie, and Shadwell matches serves only as a background story.

Kingston-upon-Hull was the location for the entire film and the stadium picked to represent The Kennel is Craven Park, home ground of Hull Kingston Rovers, the rugby league local team.

We can see Craven Park around the halfway point of the film, when Shadwell play Tambuur FC (a fictional dutch team) in the Europa Cup 1st round. The main characters decide to sell their tickets and listen to the game from the radio, seating just outside the ground. When Shadwell score they jump for joy and the Roger Millwar West Stand is perfectly visible (see pic below).

(visual by Archistadia)

The same stand is portrayed from the inside of the ground at the very end of the film (but I won’t say how and why to avoid any spoiler).

I want to say a big “thank you” to Philip Davis himself, who kindly helped me to identify a specific location within a particular frame of “I.D.”.

Almost around the end of the movie, in fact, when the four undercover agents understand they won’t see the Dogs anymore, they shout “No more Shadwell” and an empty stand appears on screen: that’s the Railway End, at Millmoor Ground, Rotherham (nowadays an almost abandoned stadium as I write – see the first pic below).

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(visual by Archistadia)

I’d also like to thank Paul Wells and Mark Shepherd for their invaluable help along the way.